United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA): Protection of Civilians Report | September 27 – October 10, 2022
Latest Development (outside the reporting period)
- On 14 and 15 October, four Palestinians were shot and killed by Israeli forces in three separate incidents across the West Bank, some of which involved exchanges of fire between Israeli forces and Palestinians.
- On 12 October, an 18-year-old Palestinian was shot and killed by Israeli forces in Al ‘Arrub Refugee Camp (Hebron) during a demonstration against the closure of Shu’fat Refugee Camp and ‘Anata in Jerusalem (see below).
- On 11 October, a Palestinian killed an Israeli soldier in a drive-by shooting near a settlement in Nablus, while he was securing a settler march. Subsequently, Israeli forces sealed off all entrances to Nablus city except one.
(More details will be provided on the above-mentioned incidents in the next report)
Highlights from the reporting period
- Daily violent incidents involving Palestinians, Israeli settlers and Israeli forces across the West Bank resulted in 13 Palestinians, including five children, and one Israeli soldier killed, and 434 Palestinians and seven Israelis injured. So far, 2022, is the highest year for Palestinian fatalities in the West Bank, compared to the same period in the previous 16 years. The UN has urged leaders to “restore calm and avoid further escalation.”
- Nine Palestinians were shot and killed by Israeli forces, including a boy, and 44 others were injured during three search-and-arrest operations in the Jenin and Al Jalazun refugee camps. On 28 September, Israeli forces reportedly shot explosive projectiles at a building in Jenin Refugee Camp, killing two Palestinians whom they defined as ‘wanted’ (more details below). During the operation, exchange of fire took place between Israeli forces and Palestinians. Three other Palestinians were killed; including one passerby, and a 12-year-old boy that was injured and later died of his wounds. 31 others were injured, including 21 with live ammunition. About 500 students were trapped in a nearby school for about four hours. On 3 October, Israeli forces raided Al Jalazun Refugee Camp (Ramallah), opened fire, and killed two Palestinians driving a car, and injured a third. Israeli forces confiscated the vehicle, withheld the bodies, and arrested the injured Palestinian. According to Israeli authorities cited by Israeli media, the Palestinian men tried to run over soldiers, an allegation disputed by local Palestinian sources. On 8 October, Israeli forces again raided Jenin Refugee Camp (Jenin), where exchange of fire took place between them and Palestinians. Two Palestinians, including one boy were shot and killed, and twelve others were injured, including ten with live ammunition. One was arrested. No Israeli injuries by Palestinians were reported in any of the three operations. This brings the total number of Palestinians killed during military operations and search-and-arrest operations by Israeli forces in the West Bank in 2022 to 70, including 27 reported in refugee camps.
- Israeli forces shot and killed two Palestinian boys in two incidents in Qalqiliya and Jerusalem. On 1 October, Israeli forces opened fire at two Palestinians on a motorcycle in Al ‘Eizariya town (Jerusalem), killing one of them, a 17-year-old child. The Israeli authorities allege that they attempted to throw a Molotov Cocktail at soldiers; an allegation disputed by eyewitnesses. According to medical sources, the child was shot dead with live ammunition in the back of the neck from close range and no traces of incendiary material were found on his body. On 7 October, Israeli forces opened fire at a group of children near the Barrier in Qalqilya, killing a 14-year-old with live ammunition. Israeli forces allege that the boy threw a Molotov cocktail at soldiers; this is disputed by Palestinian eyewitnesses. No Israeli injuries were reported in either incident. This brings to 27 the total number of Palestinian children killed in the West Bank since the beginning of 2022, at least 24 of whom were killed by Israeli forces, compared with 17 children killed during the whole of 2021.
- Another 17-year-old Palestinian boy was shot and killed by Israeli forces in Al Mazra’a Al Gharbiyeh village (Ramallah) in a settler-related incident. On 7 October, Israeli settlers accompanied by Israeli forces entered a Palestinian water spring and a public park in Area B of Al Mazra’a Al Qibliya village (Ramallah). According to community sources, Israeli settlers threw stones, and harassed Palestinians, who also threw stones. Israeli forces intervened, shooting rubber bullets and live ammunition. As a result, one boy was shot and killed, and 51 others were injured. This year has witnessed an increase in incidents of Israeli settlers entering Palestinian communities and private property, evolving into confrontations with Palestinians and clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces who intervene. Since the beginning of the year, four Palestinians, including two children, have been killed, and 1,490 have been injured by Israeli forces in settler-related incidents. On a biweekly average, the number of clashes between Palestinians and Israeli forces following settler raids or entries this year has increased by 167 per cent compared with 2021.
- One Israeli soldier and one Palestinian man were killed, and three members of Israeli forces and 52 Palestinians were injured, in Palestinian shooting attacks and Israeli military operations in Nablus and Jerusalem. On 2 October, Palestinians opened fire at Israeli settler vehicles near Beit Furik checkpoint (Nablus), in which one settler was injured. Subsequently, Israeli forces closed nearby roads while conducting search-and-arrest operations. On 5 October, Israeli forces raided and surrounded a Palestinian home in Deir al Hatab (Nablus), where they exchanged fire with Palestinians before one of the occupants surrendered. Israeli forces shot live ammunition, rubber bullets, and tear gas canisters towards Palestinians who threw stones at them. One armed Palestinian man was killed, and 52 others were injured, including six with live ammunition. During the incident, Israeli forces shot teargas canisters at three journalists and one Palestinian ambulance while it was providing first-aid to the injured. On 8 October, a Palestinian opened fire at an Israeli military checkpoint at the entrance of Shu’fat Refugee Camp in East Jerusalem, killing one Israeli female soldier and injuring two others, including a security guard. The attacker is still at large. Subsequently, Israeli forces closed all entry and exit points to the area, heavily restricting or often preventing the movement of at least 130,000 people, including medical and humanitarian personnel. On 2 October, Palestinians opened fire at Israeli soldiers stationed near Huwwara checkpoint (Nablus); one soldier was injured.
- A 7-year-old Palestinian boy died during Israeli military activity in Tuqu’ village (Bethlehem), on 29 September. According to local community sources, the boy was found dead in unclear circumstances. The UN has called for an investigation.
- In total, 433 Palestinians, including at least 45 children, were injured by Israeli forces across the West Bank, including 65 injured with live ammunition. Of the total injured, 67 were recorded near Beita and Beit Dajan (both in Nablus) and Kafr Qaddum (Qalqilya), in anti-settlement protests. Another 95 Palestinians were injured in demonstrations and clashes that erupted in Nablus, Qalqilya, Ramallah, Bethlehem and Hebron in protest against the Israeli forces closure of Shu’fat Refugee Camp and ‘Anata in Jerusalem and the Israeli military operations in Jenin refugee camp. In Al Mazra’a al Gharbiyeh and Al Bireh (both in Ramallah), Burqa and Madama (both in Nablus), 63 people were injured by Israeli forces accompanying settlers who entered Palestinian communities, in four incidents which evolved into confrontations with Palestinians (more details below). According to Palestinian sources, Israeli forces fired sound bombs, teargas canisters and rubber bullets at residents who threw stones. Another 198 people were injured in military operations and search-and-arrest operations (details above). In a separate incident, on 8 October, ten Palestinians were injured, and eight were arrested, including five children, by Israeli forces in and around the Old City of Jerusalem, after Palestinians gathered to celebrate Prophet Mohammad’s birthday. Israeli forces reportedly ordered Palestinians to leave, and then fired rubber bullets, sound grenades and teargas canisters toward Palestinians who reportedly threw bottles.
- Overall, Israeli forces conducted 145 search-and-arrest operations and arrested 127 Palestinians, including 13 children, across the West Bank. The Jerusalem governorate accounted for the highest number of operations (59) and the highest number of arrests (43). So far in 2022, the monthly average number of Palestinians arrested by Israeli forces in the West Bank is the highest since 2017. During 15 of these operations, Israeli forces fired live ammunition at Palestinians who threw stones and, in some cases, opened fire at Israeli forces, resulting in the killing of ten Palestinians and 198 injuries, including 40 by live ammunition.
- The Israeli authorities demolished, confiscated, or forced people to demolish 24 Palestinian-owned structures in East Jerusalem and Area C of the West Bank, citing the lack of Israeli-issued building permits; three of the structures had been provided as donor-funded humanitarian aid. As a result, 71 people, including 41 children, were displaced, and the livelihoods of about 36 others were affected. Some 22 of the structures were in Area C and two other structures were demolished in East Jerusalem by their owners following the issuance of demolition orders, to avoid paying fines when the structure is demolished by Israeli authorities.
- On 28 September, the Israeli authorities destroyed the first floor of a four-story residential building in Jenin Refugee Camp (Jenin), resulting in the displacement of one household, comprising of five people, including one child. The destruction, also referred to above, reportedly occurred during the final stage of a military operation during which suspects hid and refused to surrender. Israeli forces called on the suspect to turn himself in, and shot explosive projectiles at the building, destroying one apartment, and causing damage to other residential apartments within the same or nearby buildings. During the operation, four Palestinians were killed, and another was injured and later died of his wounds. This is the fifth time since the beginning of 2022 in which Israeli forces used shoulder-fired explosive projectiles in crowded urban areas during military operations in the West Bank.
- Israeli settlers injured 35 Palestinians, and people known or believed to be Israeli settlers damaged Palestinian property in 42 instances. On 28 September and 4 October, Israeli settlers entered Madama and Huwwara towns (both in Nablus) where they set fire to uncultivated lands, physically assaulted Palestinians, or threw stones at people and houses. 19 Palestinians were injured. In the H2 area of Hebron city, Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinian houses, and pepper-sprayed residents; eight Palestinians, including three children, were injured. On at least five occasions, Israeli settlers blocked intersections on road 60 between Nablus and Jenin, near Beit El checkpoint (Ramallah) and at the Huwwara checkpoint. Israeli settlers threw stones at Palestinian vehicles and caused severe traffic jams. Such incidents evolved into confrontations between Palestinians, who threw stones and Israeli forces who intervened by shooting live ammunition, rubber bullets and tear gas canisters. Four Palestinians were injured from stones reportedly thrown by settlers and at least twelve Palestinian-owned vehicles were damaged. In another three incidents in Biddya (Salfit), Ein el Beida (Tubas) and Jurat al Khiel (Hebron), three Palestinian herders were injured after settlers attacked them and physically assaulted them while they were working on their lands and herding their livestock. In at least 16 other incidents, at least twenty Palestinian-owned cars were damaged when Israeli settlers stoned them near Nablus, Qalqiliya, Jerusalem and Ramallah. Additionally, around 500 Palestinian-owned trees were set on fire, uprooted, or vandalized in 13 separate incidents. Another 13 incidents in Hebron, Jerusalem, Nablus, Ramallah, Salfit and Tubas resulted in damage to cultivated crops, livestock, agricultural equipment, water tanks, livelihood-related structures, and water networks. On 4 October, Israeli settlers, reportedly from Yitzhar, stormed the Urif school (Nablus) while classes were being held, and threw stones, forcing the administration to suspend school and evacuate the students to safety; two students and the school principal were injured, 250 students were otherwise affected, and damage to property was reported. Subsequently, Israeli forces shot teargas canisters at Palestinians who threw stones at settlers.
- Four Israeli settlers were injured in four separate incidents across the West Bank, including one after Palestinians shot at their vehicle near Nablus and in three other incidents after people known or believed to be Palestinians threw stones at Israeli vehicles traveling on West Bank roads. At least four Israeli-plated vehicles were damaged, according to Israeli sources.
- In the Gaza Strip, on at least 25 occasions, Israeli forces opened warning fire near Israel’s perimeter fence or off the coast, presumably to enforce access restrictions in areas within Gaza; two fishing boats sustain damages with no injuries reported. One Palestinian man was arrested while reportedly trying to enter Israel through the perimeter fence near Beit Lahiya.